Global Review – 18th August

‘Price of gas to double this year ‘- Russia

Russia expects the average price of exported gas to double this year to $730 per 1,000 cubic metres before gradually decreasing until the end of 2025, as gas exports through pipelines decline. This is what the Russian economy ministry predicts, according to Reuters. Gas flows from Russia, Europe’s main supplier, are proceeding at reduced levels this year since Moscow began military operations against Ukraine. In addition, supplies to some European countries were cut off when they refused to pay in rubles and after the dispute over repairs to the turbine for the Nord Stream 1 pipeline that brings methane from Russia to Germany. All of this has caused severe price pressures. Russia’s Ministry of Economy, Reuters reports, expects Gazprom’s gas exports to drop to 170.4 billion cubic metres this year, compared to a previous forecast, released in May, of 185 billion cubic metres and compared to 205.6 billion cubic metres exported in 2021. The ministry also said gas volumes will continue to decline this year without giving any explanation. Due to scarce supplies, Gazprom’s average gas price is expected to reach $730 per 1,000 cubic metres in 2022, more than double the $304.6 per 1,000 cubic metres of last year – a 40% increase over the previous year. to the previous forecast of $ 523.3 per 1,000 cubic metres. Russia is gradually increasing its oil production after the cuts linked to sanctions and following the increase in purchases by Asian countries, leading Moscow to increase its forecasts for production and exports until the end of 2025. Gazprom also said gas supplies to China are increasing, but did not provide details with Europe remaining by far the largest market for Russian gas.Rising oil export volumes, coupled with rising gas prices, would help Russia earn $337.5 billion and $255.8 billion from energy exports this year and next, respectively. Last year, Russia earned $244.2 billion from energy exports.

UK has the worst inflation rate in G7

“Britain has the worst inflation in the G7” headlines the ‘Telegraph’ as it reports that UK inflation is at a higher rate than in America or major eurozone countries. Economist Martin Beck told the paper: “We have got the US’s excess demand for workers and the Europeans’ massive energy bill issues, so we have the worst of both worlds when it comes to inflation.” ‘The Financial Times’ leads on the UK’s inflation rate rising above 10% in July for the first time in 40 years. Consumer prices were 10.1% higher than the previous year, exceeding expectations inflation would remain in single digits, the FT reports. The paper writes the next Conservative Party leader will inherit an economy that will “resemble the 1970s era, when Britain was regarded as the ‘sickman of Europe’”. A study predicts two-thirds of all UK households will be trapped in fuel poverty by January, the ‘Guardian’ reports. The University of York research says 18 millions families – the equivalent 45 million people – will be struggling to make ends meet after further predicted rises in the energy price cap in October and January. It quotes Labour shadow minister Ed Miliband calling the figures “shocking” and showing the “full scale of the national emergency that could unfold unless the government acts”.  “Now brace for the interest rate hike” say the ‘i’ newspaper and the ‘Express’, as they warn millions will face increased mortgage payments as the cost of living crisis deepens. Former Chancellor Philip Hammond tells the paper the government is “not functional” and must get tough on wages to tackle inflation.

Sarah Palin wins Republican primary in Alaska

Sarah Palin advances in the November elections, winning one of the four seats available in the Republican primary in Alaska for the House. The American media predicts this success would feed Palin’s hopes for a return to politics. She also won in the state for Lisa Murkowski, candidate in the primary for the Senate.

Chaney for president?

Meanwhile, Liz Cheney is considering running for president. This was stated by the Republican exponent herself in an interview with Nbc, underlining that she will decide in the coming months. Cheney, Donald Trump’s sworn enemy, was defeated in the Republican primary in Wyoming by the candidate backed by the former president.

Explosion in Kabul mosque kills 10, injures 30

At least 10 people – including a prominent cleric – were killed and 30 others were injured in a bombing at a mosque in Kabul during evening prayers on Wednesday. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, the latest to strike the country in the year since the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan. The prime suspect for Wednesday’s bombing will be the Islamic State group’s local affiliate that has stepped up attacks targeting the Taliban and civilians since the former insurgents’ takeover. According to an eyewitness, the explosion was carried out by a suicide bomber. The Italian Emergency hospital in Kabul said that at least 27 wounded civilians, including five children, were brought there from the site of the bomb blast.

‘I attacked Rushdie because he attacked Islam’ – Hadi Matar

“He attacked Islam, he is not a good person,” Salman Rushdie’s assailant said in an exclusive ‘New York Post’ interview from prison. “I don’t like that man, he attacked the beliefs of Muslims, their system of values”, said Hadi Matar, adding, “I respect the Ayatollah, I think he is a great person.” Salman Rushdie’s assailant denied having been in contact with Iranian Pasdarans (Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) but admitted, that he was “inspired” by watching the writer’s YouTube video. Rushdie’s attacker said he was ‘surprised’ the author had survived the attack.

China sends troops to Russia for exercises

As the war in Ukraine enters its 175th day, China announced it would be sending troops to Russia for exercises with several other countries including India, Belarus and Tajikistan. The Beijing Defence Ministry reported the Chinese presence “is not related to the current international and regional situation”. The military operations are part of a collaboration agreement with “the aim of deepening practical and friendly cooperation with the armies of participating countries, improving the level of strategic collaboration between the parties and strengthening the response capacity to various security threats”, reads a note.

China thanks Putin for ‘consistent support on Taiwan’

China thanks the support on Taiwan received by Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to whom the visit of US House speaker Nancy Pelosi was a “well-planned provocation”. Foreign Ministry spokesman Wan Wenbin recalled that more than 170 countries have reaffirmed the principle of One China, supporting Beijing “in its safeguarding of national sovereignty and territorial integrity”. Putin’s judgments “are a manifestation of high-level strategic cooperation between China and Russia and of consistent and firm mutual support on issues that affect each other’s fundamental interests”.

Billionaire Ratcliffe ‘potential buyer’ of Man Utd

British businessman Jim Ratcliffe is “definitely a potential buyer” of Manchester United if the English football giants go on sale, a spokesman for the Ineos petrochemicals billionaire said Wednesday. Ineos was responding to reports United’s current owners, the US-based Glazer family, are considering selling a minority stake, with the team currently bottom of the Premier League following a woeful start to the season under new manager Erik ten Hag. The Ineos spokesman told ‘The Times’ that Ratcliffe, reportedly Britain’s richest man, would be prepared to buy such a stake as a prelude to assuming full control at Old Trafford. The Glazers, who bought United in 2005 in a leveraged buyout that saddled the club with huge debts, have long been accused of taking more out financially than they have invested in terms of transfer funds or in redeveloping the club’s crumbling Old Trafford ground. Interest in buying out the Glazers came after Elon Musk, the world’s richest man, said he had only been joking when he said he was purchasing United.

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